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Denver school greenhouse

New greenhouse at Denver Public Schools will provide healthier lunches

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Are you dismayed by the greasy burgers and pizza at your school’s lunchroom? For years, Denver Public Schools started working with urban gardening nonprofits to turn that image around… at least, at a few schools.

But the program — building gardens on land schools weren’t using — had limited reach. The farms only produced for the schools where they were located; beyond that, they weren’t exactly feeding the district. And the gardens’ lifespan was short. Some schools even built new buildings on the once-empty fields where food flourished.

While many of those original farms have closed, Schmitt Elementary and Bradley International School still run urban gardens on site. And with the new greenhouse, big plans are in the works.

The new greenhouse, which will be ready to be planted by late spring 2022, will first be used to grow cherry and slicing tomatoes to liven up salads. If all goes well, the district will add leafy greens, peppers, cucumbers and strawberries.

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-Kyle Harris, Denverite

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